Hossam Ramzy

Best of Hossam Ramzy, Vol. 2

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The question is -- who hasn't Hossam Ramzy played with? His résumé is a literal who's who of everyone in rock, pop, Celtic, and world music. In other words the Egyptian-born English resident is obviously a master of his percussive craft, and in the kind of demand most musicians only dream about. Whether this really qualifies as a best-of, however, remains moot. This is, as the cover implies, belly dance music. It's of a higher musical order than most, admittedly, but still relatively generic and anonymous -- you could put it on as background at your next dinner party (say, if you're eating Moroccan food) and not surprise anyone. There's precious little stamp of individuality to the music, which is a shame, because Ramzy is a fine talent. The implication that this is some of his best is a little disturbing, if his personality is stamped so faintly on this.

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